Rotational relaxation in simple chain models

JV Heffernan and J Budzien and F Avila and TC Dotson and VJ Aston and JD Mccoy and DB Adolf, JOURNAL OF CHEMICAL PHYSICS, 127, 214902 (2007).

DOI: 10.1063/1.2798755

The rotational dynamics of chemically similar systems based on freely jointed and freely rotating chains are studied. The second Legendre polynomial of vectors along chain backbones is used to investigate the rotational dynamics at different length scales. In a previous study, it was demonstrated that the additional bond-angle constraint in the freely rotating case noticeably perturbs the character of the translational relaxation away from that of the freely jointed system. Here, it is shown that differences are also apparent in the two systems' rotational dynamics. The relaxation of the end-to-end vector is found to display a long time, single-exponential tail and a stretched exponential region at intermediate times. The stretching exponents beta are found to be 0.75 +/- 0.02 for the freely jointed case and 0.68 +/- 0.02 for the freely rotating case. For both system types, time-packing-fraction superposition is seen to hold on the end-to-end length scale. In addition, for both systems, the rotational relaxation times are shown to be proportional to the translational relaxation times, demonstrating that the Debye-Stokes-Einstein law holds. The second Legendre polynomial of the bond vector is used to probe relaxation behavior at short length scales. For the freely rotating case, the end-to-end relaxation times scale differently than the bond relaxation times, implying that the behavior is non-Stokes-Einstein, and that time-packing-fraction superposition does not hold across length scales for this system. For the freely jointed case, end-to-endrelaxation times do scale with bond relaxation times, and both Stokes-Einstein and time-packing-fraction- across-length-scales superposition are obeyed. (c) 2007 American Institute of Physics.

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